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Hydraulics and Pneumatics - Physics




In this programme, we will use physics skills to examine water and air pressure: hydraulics and pneumatics. Undertaking a range of investigations using new physics resources, the students will also write up their work and use videos to learn new concepts. We will identify and describe the distinctive properties of liquids and air to control pressure. We will begin by learning to ask scientific questions, to hypothesise, handle equipment and structure and write up investigations.  Students will have the opportunity to follow their own interests in pressure and conduct a practical research project of their choosing. Visits will be made to local engineering firms for the group to understand how machines and tools are controlled using pressure.

Investigations to include:

Master and slave pistons

Formula for pressure

Calculations for pressure equations

Hydraulics - using liquids (oil and water)

Pneumatics - using air pressure

Increases and Decreases in pressure - through different sizes of pistons and tubing

Use of hydraulics and pneumatics in the workplace


Learning Outcomes


  • Work collaboratively to solve problems and prove challenging hypothesises

  • Observe, measure and record chemical and physical characteristics of materials

  • Explore ways in which scientists collaborate and support their ideas with evidence

  • Build on prior results and experience, thereby developing team knowledge

  • Use a range of scientific symbols, conventions and vocabulary

  • Develop active listening skills and ask appropriate questions

  • Clearly communicate thoughts and ideas  


3 hours per week for 8 weeks, in Term 3

Target Age

9 - 13 year olds


This programme is part of Science and Tech Thursdays and runs from 9-12:30 pm each week (with a 30 minute brain gym and eating break)